Ask CPAG Online - How much can you be paid?

This section looks out how much STBA you can get.

There are no rules in the law about how much STBAs should be. Official guidance (paragraphs 33-34) says that the STBA ‘should be kept to the minimum amount necessary to limit the period the claimant receives a reduced amount of benefit’, and that decision makers should take account of your ability to repay the STBA.

The maximum you can be paid is 60 per cent of the daily rate of your benefit personal allowance, multiplied by the number of days in which you would be entitled to benefit before you are due to be paid.

Example (based on paragraphs 33-39 of the guidance and following examples)

Don claims JSA on 28 November. His JSA entitlement will not begin until he has served out seven ‘waiting days’, and his first JSA payment is not due until several days after that (as JSA is paid in arrears).

On 30 November, he phones the DWP contact centre to request an STBA, as he has no money for food and cannot wait until the day his first payment is due. The DWP decide that he is to be awarded an STBA. Don’s JSA personal allowance is £73.10 per week, giving a daily rate of £10.41. The DWP calculate that from the end of Dave’s waiting period to the date he is due to be paid is 5 days.

Therefore Don’s STBA is 60 per cent of £10.41 = £6.24 x 5 days = £31.00 (after rounding down).

The STBA is paid to Don from the date he applied for the STBA , i.e. it is paid to him during the waiting period.

NB - the dates are just examples, they do no relate to a particular year.

You can ask the DWP to reconsider the decision about how much STBA you are awarded. Try to do this during the conversation in which the decision maker tells you about your STBA decision. You do not have the right of appeal. For more, see How do you challenge a decision about a short-term benefit advance?